“The Good Life” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.

Hi Ziggy here. I’ve managed to take control of John’s iPad while he’s taking a shower. I’m out on the veranda, the western, lagoon facing one, if you’re interested.

I’ve been out here since around 04.45 hours when John got up. He had his coffee – instant (he’s so lazy), black and unsweetened – and I had my cool, clear water and an early morning snack of chicken and vegetable flavoured biscuits.

It’s been awhile since I last wrote anything but today I just knew that I had to. Why? Well, it’s an important day. It’s one year ago exactly that Rose (she’s really, really and I mean REALLY, nice) and John adopted me.

I hadn’t been with them for too long when I overheard one of my ex BATSUB buddies say to Rose and John “That mutt has won the lottery twice”. At the time I didn’t understand what he was on about but it didn’t too long for me to know exactly what he meant.

My first ‘lottery’ win was when I was found, along with my brother Grizzly, as a four week old puppy by Frank, my first Dad.


I’m the cute blond one.

Frank is a soldier in the British Army and was posted to be a member of BATSUB, which is based at Price Barracks in Ladyville ,to look after all of the vehicles. It was just behind the workshop that Frank found my brother and me. He was obviously taken with my good looks and decided to keep me all for himself and find a home for Grizzly.

From that point I became a member of the BATSUB team ,which swelled from six to seven with my inclusion.

I was very young and small and Frank used to carry me to work inside his shirt until we got to our office.


I’m a fast learner and I grew quite quickly and before too long I was helping Frank out by taking care of administrative work.


I also learnt that if you’re in the British Army you work hard but you play even harder. And I love to play! It was during one weekend when Frank and I were ‘playing’that I first met John and Rose . We decided to catch the water taxi from Belize City and spend a weekend on Ambergris Caye . Little did I know at the time that it would become my eventual home.

Now I knew straight away that I liked John and Rose (especially her) but I’ve got to be honest and admit that what I really loved about Ambergris Caye was when Frank took me to the Palapa Bar. Oh what fun. Drinking Ligthouse beers with my Army mates and playing in the Caribbean Sea.


Having a swim with my friends.


Getting a massage from Frank.


Time for a well deserved, cold and refreshing, Lighthouse.

I got to see quite a lot of Rose (she really is rather nice you know) and John over the coming months and then I got to spend a whole month with them when Frank returned to the UK for some training and a holiday. What I didn’t know was that my stay with them was a trial run to see if I liked them (I did, and especially Rose) and if they liked me. Frank , you see, had been posted to Scotland and wouldn’t be able to take me with him.

We all got on great during my month’s holiday and I did my best to show them how clever and polite I can be. I nearly blotted my copybook though when John (really stupid move on his part) decided that I should sleep outside. I know I shouldn’t have done it but I scratched the front door.


I’m not proud of what I did but sometimes drastic actions require drastic measures. The result? John relented and I got to sleep inside the house. Told you I’m clever didn’t I!

I had lots of fun during the month and it passed really quickly and I returned to my home in Ladyville. But not for long because on 26 July last year when I left Price Barracks with Frank I knew that something was up. We (or I should say me to be more precise) never usually travelled with so much of my stuff. Well actually it was all of my stuff, including my kennel.



“Never have slept in it since I moved to Ambergris Caye. And never will!”

That was one year ago today. Doesn’t time pass quickly when you are having fun. And I have fun every day and get lots of treats. Look at my latest treat that Rose (see, told you she’s nice) bought me. My very own BATSUB dog tag.


It should have been khaki green to match my BATSUB ‘T’ shirt


but they couldn’t get the colour right because they didn’t have yellow.

I’m still proud to wear it though!


The year has passed really quickly. Time really does fly when you’re enjoying yourself. And there’s no doubt in mind that I’m enjoying the good life.

Today is a day for me to reflect on all of the great times I have had. And I know I’ve got lots more to come.


Me in my old garden at Price Barracks.


And in my garden on Ambergris Caye. Lots of shady places. No, not those kind of shady places!


When I did use the kennel. Distant memory now!


Me showing Rose one of BATSUB’s new lorries (trucks for non UK readers).


I’ve downsized since then and now I’ve got a golf cart.


Me in my Partick Thistle shirt.


But I support Arsenal as well now.

And one of my favourite photos.


You can just see that she’s really, really nice.

Here’s to the next year!

The headline for today’s edition is based on the single released in 1962 by Tony Bennett which reached number eighteen on the US Billboard Hot 100 and number twenty-seven on the UK Singles Chart.

“Catch Us If You Can” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.

C’mon now, admit it. You did, didn’t you. You were attracted to this edition by the headline. You thought it must be a post about John McAfee fleeing Belize with Samantha Vanegas , his girlfriend at the time, in December 2012 (yes, it was that long ago).

But no, it’s not about that so if you clicked to read about the eccentric McAfee now is the time to leave this blog post and search again. I really don’t want you here under false pretences because it has nothing at all to do with McAfee. It’s all about the lobster.

Since first coming to Ambergris Caye back in 1998 I’ve spent a fair bit of time with lobsters. Although I have to admit that I first fell in love with a lobster much, much earlier. Around 1985 I think.

I’d been invited out to lunch by a business acquaintance, an older and far more worldly chap than me. And a far, far, far more wealthy chap as well. “Would I like to go to The Ivy” he asked. “Absolutely” I replied without a moments hesitation. I knew of the restaurant but never dreamt I’d actually go there. This is a restaurant that unless you are “someone” or know someone who “is someone” you can wait months to get a table.

It was there that I lost my lobster virginity. My recall is that I was all fingers and thumbs as I undressed the lobster but as inexperienced as I was I’ll never forget that first time. Well you don’t, do you! And you know what. It created an insatiable craving. Overnight I became a lobsterholic.

So you can imagine (or maybe you can’t) my unbridled joy when Charles Worthington – he of Estel’s Dine By the Sea fame – asked me if I’d like to join him when he went out to empty his lobster traps.

Now I haven’t stuttered since being called to the front of the classroom by the teacher for committing a misdemeanour as a very young and extremely shy schoolboy. “Ye, ye, yes please” I excitedly replied”.

So yesterday morning around 10.30 hours I met Charles outside a locked up Estel’s . It was Tuesday and as regular readers and frequenters of this fine establishment will know, it’s closed on Tuesdays.


Normally when it looks like this i.e. closed, I start to get withdrawal symptoms but not this time.

Time to get on the boat


and head out to sea



whilst Cha Cha started getting the gear ready.


I should (well I don’t have to but I do want to) mention that as we cast off we heard the sound of thunder in the distance. Unperturbed though we headed south and then east and hadn’t been going too long when Charles ‘cut’ the engine. We’d arrived at the first lobster trap.


Cha Cha and Charles hooking the lobster trap. Charles’ attention though was definitely on the dark ominous clouds that were getting closer and closer to us.




A quick look inside revealed that the trap was empty. There’s no way of knowing for sure (unless the trap is put back in the water the wrong way up) but had a poacher been at work?

The sky by this time had got darker and darker and Charles and Cha Cha frantically scrubbed the algae from the trap – apparently lobsters don’t like this – and placed it back on the bed of the sea. Charles then started the engine and,looking behind him at the rain getting ever closer to us, opened up the throttle and we bounced our way across the waves. It was as if he was challenging the rain to catch us if you can!

He made a valiant effort as we saw his hut getting ever closer but then the rain caught up and then engulfed us. Cold -yes cold – biting rain drenched us in seconds and by the time we moored up I looked and felt like a drowned rat (no, there are no photos).

I scampered in to the hut (I’m no fool) while Cha Cha and Charles secured the boat.


We holed up in the hut


for around thirty minutes until the rain stopped and the dark clouds were replaced with a bright, sunny sky. Time to get back in the boat and get to those traps!


“Goodbye safe refuge”.

The second trap gave us what we were out there for, the spiny lobster or the Panulirus argus




Get the hatch open and get the lobster out



and in to the livewell.


We visited the remainder of Charles’ traps and then it was time for Cha Cha to put on the flippers , mask and snorkel and dive down to the shades that Charles has placed on the seabed.



If you look hard you can just see the shade beneath Cha Cha.

Charles and I whittled away the time talking about what could be done to enhance the well being of lobster . Charles would like to see size restrictions at both ends of the scale. Keep the existing minimum size restriction but add a restriction that would see lobsters over a certain size thrown back. Apparently the bigger ones are more prolific breeders.

We were still talking when Cha Cha emerged from the water


clutching a handful of lobster.

All too soon (well for me anyway) we’d visited all of the shades and it was time to head back to shore


and to moor up in front of Estel’s


and start cleaning our catch



Aided with a Belikin. It’s thirsty work catching lobsters you know!

And here’s the ones that I took from one of the traps.


Honestly, I did. Ask Charles!

I had a fantastic day. Both fun and interesting. So much so I’m going to use the ‘A’ word to describe it. Yes, it was amazing.

The headline for today’s edition is based on the single released in 1965 by The Dave Clark Five which reached number five on the UK Singles Chart and number four on the US Billboard Hot 100.